Buzzfeed's "Can A Man Be A Feminist?" Video Clears Up Misconceptions And Shows How Far We Still Have To Go
While more and more women have become willing to embrace the label "feminist" over recent years, the movement hasn't caught on as quickly among men. Should it? Buzzfeed's "Can A Man Be A Feminist?" video answers that question. But first, it looks at what men think of feminism.
The host of the video walks around Los Angeles and interviews men on the street about whether or not they consider themselves feminists, and the results are pretty bleak. One says he's not a feminist because he's masculine. Another says he isn't because he doesn't put women above men. "This guy is funny," one man comments after he's asked. "He's a comedian." One simply responds, "No... I'm not a woman."
To try to figure out whether there's any merit to this idea that a feminist is a woman who puts women above men, the host interviews Juliet Williams, a Professor in UCLA's Department of Gender Studies. Williams explains that feminism was actually founded based on the belief that patriarchy hurts everyone:
The central message of feminism from the very start has been that gender equality and the gender system as a whole isn't just bad for women. It's very bad for men too. It saddles men and women with so many limiting stereotypes — whether it's, for women, the idea that you have to be pretty and motherly and shy and quiet, or for men, this idea that to have social value, you have to be aggressive and competitive and angry, and all these expectations that we now know cause so much suffering."
Williams said feminism is "by, for, and about women" but that men are "welcome to participate." In fact, she adds, "we need every man, woman, and child to be on board with this."
The host then asked some of his male friends what feminism meant to them. One said he found traditional masculinity dehumanizing, and another said he wanted to stand up for his mom, girlfriend, and three sisters — and added that feminism is just common sense and really shouldn't be under debate.
So, what's the verdict: Can men be feminists? Yup, and they have a lot of good reasons to be. Watch the video below: